Marshalltown Community College prepares students to take one of two paths: to qualify for a job in today's workforce, or to further their education by transferring their MCC credits to a university. MCC students who graduate from a technical career program or who transfer to another college are ready for their next step. The College has begun providing additional evidence of its students' competence through participation in the professional certification process.
MCC students are encouraged to certify themselves for workplace employability through a professional certification known as the National Career Readiness Certificate (NCRC). A growing number of employers are interested in verifying future employees' abilities in the areas of applied mathematics, locating information, and reading for information. The NCRC achieves this by measuring skills considered necessary for success in various occupations. Students already leave MCC with a strong background in specific technical careers (such as machining, construction, welding, or the utility industry). Those students can now add NCRC employability certification to their resumes for a successful hire.
Various other MCC degree programs have certification options as well. For example, our carpentry program validates construction competencies such as wall framing through NCCER credentialing. In information technology careers such as computer applications in business, students may choose to certify themselves in word processing, spreadsheets, database management, email/calendar usage and presentation software through Microsoft Office Certification. In computer networking, coursework leads to knowledge assessment in the installation and design of computer networks. MCC offers four classes allowing students to prepare for the CCNA (Cisco Certified Network Associate) certification as part of this program. Additional Microsoft certification is offered for hardware, security, help-desk, operating systems, and servers.
In addition, a more general digital literacy credential is available to any MCC student for internet and computing core certification (IC3), demonstrating that the student has a strong computer foundation and digital proficiency.
For many years, MCC health occupation careers have certified nurse aide assistants, practical nurses, registered nurses, dental assistants, and medical assistants as competent through key exams taken after MCC program completion. Our college is proud of the strong standing of our graduates year after year, with test passage rates that rank at the highest or among the highest in the state. As MCC takes steps to build additional professional credentials for students in other programs, we expect to continue this strong record of success.
Chris Russell is the MCC Dean of Students & Academic Affairs.